Ernst Loof

4/7/1907 - 3/3/1956

Record updated 04-Jul-07

Eight time German Motorcycle Champion before the war, he established Veritas and drove one of his own cars in the German Grand Prix in 1953.

Ernst Loof
Ernst Loof was born in Neindorf, Germany and started his racing on motorcycles, winning the German Motorcycle Championship eight times between 1930 and 1938. He worked as an engineer at BMW eventually becoming the head of their racing operations and building the 328 special coupe that Huschke von Hanstein and Walter Baumer used to win the shotened Mille Miglia in 1940.

After the end of the second World War in 1945, BMW's operations were closed down and in 1946, after a failed plan to continue production in England, several employees left BMW to form their own company named Veritas, Latin for truth, in Baden. Headed by Loof and Lorenz Dietrich they built racing cars using pre-war BMW 328 six cylinder engines with a tubular frames and alloy bodies. Initially they produced a sports car, the RS, and then a single seater, the Meteor. They moved to the French zone where they offered an ever increasing range of models, but they became over ambitious and financial problems in 1950 forced the works to close.

Loof moved the firm to a small workshop at the Nurburgring and, with financial help and single overhead cam 2 litre engines supplied by Heinkel, Veritas continued production until 1953 when Loof returned to BMW. In all 78 different models were produced.

Loof seldom raced but did drive one of his BMW engined machines in the 1953 German Grand Prix where he retired with fuel pump failure. He also rallied a BMW in 1954 but was then diagnosed with a brain tumour and died in 1956 after a long illness.